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Parents could face new penalty for delinquent support payments

If you are a father who has child support obligations, it is possible you have had trouble maintaining your payments. This is a very common problem, and unfortunately, the potential penalties of missing your payments in Texas just got harsher.

Come the fall of this year, parents who are six or more months behind on their support payments will be prohibited from registering their vehicles. A Child Support Division spokeswoman stated in an interview that the initiative was put in play as part of an effort to use every possible tool available to collect the money that's owed.

Yet other voices question the move, pointing out that such a measure could make it more difficult for delinquent parents to catch up with lagging payments. This argument makes sense when you consider that taking away a person's transportation makes it harder to get to work and earn the money needed to pay down the debt.

As it stands, the state already has the capacity to revoke a delinquent parent's driver's license, so the new registration rule is just one more weapon in the arsenal.

Far too often a man is labeled a deadbeat dad when the truth is he simply does not have an income that enables him to keep up with his child support payments. Calling a man such names can damage his reputation and make him feel very discouraged. Moreover, if the situation is not properly addressed, it could negatively impact a man's relationship with his child.

If child support issues are causing you problems, you may want to discuss the matter with a Texas family law attorney. In certain circumstances, it is possible to have the amount you must pay adjusted to a more reasonable level. An attorney could advise you on your options and act on your behalf to resolve the dispute.

Source: The Texas Tribune, "Texas to Tie Car Registration Renewal to Child Support," Madlin Mekelburg, June 14, 2016

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